tv CNN Newsroom with Poppy Harlow and Jim Sciutto CNN September 16, 2019 7:00am-8:00am PDT
all right. good morning, everyone. top of the hour. i'm poppy harlow. >> i'm jim shut to. they're trying to work out a deal after nearly 50,000 workers walked off the jobs this morning starting a strike that could cost millions and very quickly. >> 31 factories, nearly 2 dozen other gm facilities halted this morning. it is the largest strike by any union against any american business since the last uaw strike that was in 2007. our business and politics reporter vanessa joins us again this hour live from detroit. i mean, this is intense and it is significant that these workers have all come together
to take this move. >> reporter: yeah. good morning to you, poppy. just as uaw and gm are meeting behind closed doors this hour, we are seeing tens of thousands of gm workers out on the picket lines this morning, about 50,000 across 9 different states. now, this issue is really because of a contract negotiation that they cannot come to an agreement on. gm saying that they provided a fair and strong contract. but uaw saying this is not going far enough, they want better health benefits, a better starting salary for their employees and they want job security. now, this plan is particularly interesting because this is one of a couple that are slated to close at the end of 2020. part of this contract negotiation is trying to get another vehicle inside this plant for workers to work on. we have also heard from a lot of the people you see walking just over here that this is a
generational career, a lot of their fathers and grandfathers have worked here and their children and particularly concerned about this contract negotiation and whether or not there will be a job for the future. take a listen to one gentleman we spoke to just moments ago. >> once you get in here, it's pretty hard to leave. it is a good paying job and good benefits and we'd like to keep it that way. and i think that one of the main reasons is if you pay the people good money this is what's going to grow an economy. it is not paying the rich guy making the big companies richer. that's not going to grow the economy. you have to pay the people. pay them decent. that's all. decent. >> reporter: now, that gentleman has a daughter working in the flint facility. those individuals there are also on trike. but jim and poppy, as this contract negotiation gets under way, we're seeing that both sides are still really far
apart. so it'll be interesting to see whether or not anything comes out of these talks today. >> va necessary yenessa, i reads saying it costs $1.3 million an hour for a strike like this so let's hope they come to the table very quickly. thank you for the reporting. with us now is christine romans. %-p. in the wake of gm coming out last night and publicly putting out there what they're offering the workers which never happened. >> never. >> $7 billion, higher pay, new jobs. >> they're trying to really own the message i think that they understand that people are very angry that those plants will close, unallocated and the terrible manage mtd speak of the auto industry and unallocating the plants and making -- we are making concessions here and saying we want to invest $7 billion, get people back into some of the facilities and gear to the future. the point for this company i
think is fascinating is over the past decade it ease changed so much. and the next decade will probably be more challenging than any other period in american auto mative history. they have to spend a lot of money to go to electric vehicles, electric trucks in particular. self-driving technology. battery cell research. these are things that cost a lot of money and trying to wring money out of their current structure so they can pay for it so they can survive. >> they have to make a lot of bets to survive and not sure where the trends land. let's ask you about the political implications. we have a little election next year. >> oh, that's right. >> enormous affect on the economy. this shutdown and then the auto suppliers that radiate out from there. how long does the strike have to last to have an economic impact in gdp numbers? >> i think it's larger impact because everybody knows how important the auto industry for the 20th century business for the american economy.
right? i think politically it will have a bigger impact than economically. i know the workers have a strike fund and will be paid some point i think $250 a week but it's hard. it is really hard if you're on striker's pay and so rare. >> that is not close to their -- >> no, not at all. >> the presidential candidate last night making a point about the company, the people, the union saying, look, we should share your profits with us, $2 billion last quarter. pointing out that the ceo of gm made $22 million last year, 281 times the median gm worker so going after mary barra and someone who has steered this company through treacherous, treacherous times. but you're starting to see sort of a populous play here that these are real workers. don't pay fat cats and executives. >> it's bigger than gm. that julio castro tweet to the point of seeing more democrats favor socialism versus
capitalism in the gallup polling, whether they mean what it means in practical terms but what's a fair and just capitalist system? we'll keep following it. >> fascinating stuff. >> the multiples with the ceo makes versus the assembly line worker growing for decades and another broader issue. >> these are some of the highest paid assembly line workers in the world and a global marketplace and trade policies raising costs for the parts and raw materials so you have got an auto industry that's facing declining global car purchases and probably continues and focusing heavily on suvs and trucks. we have gas prices go up because of the middle east and then in a tough situation there, too. all this spending on investment of the new technologies, it is a treacherous moment for the industry. >> christine romans, great to have you. >> thank you. >> a story to follow this morning. president trump implying that iran may be responsible for this weekend's shocking attack on oil facilities in saudi arabia. in a tweet just in the last hour, the president stopped
short of directly blaming iran. iran denied any involvement in the attack. >> about 6 million barrels per day, half of the saudi's oil capacity, were knocked out in that coordinated attack. the mixed messages of the white house here are really significant because the word choice, locked and loaded from the president carries a lot of weight and then to hear mark short this morning say well, well, well, you know, it is not exactly what it means. do you know what it means? >> reporter: i don't, poppy and jim. but you are right. president trump over the weekend tweeting that the united states is locked and loaded, ready to respond to this attack on saudi arabia. the president using a firearm metaphor to relay that the united states is prepared to respond. you're right. he also did not specifically mention iran in that tweet. he alluded to iran potentially being responsible this morning saying we'll see if iran is behind this attack. no such apprehension of the secretary of state mike pompeo
who squarely placed the blame on iran nor from the close aide to vice president mike pence. short saying this morning he believes pompeo is ready to present significant evidence that iran is responsible for the attack in saudi arabia. also, as you said down playing that locked and loaded statement saying that the president was speaking broadly about the united states' ability to respond to any potential shortage in world oil markets and point out there's mixed messages coming to whether the united states would sit down with iranian leadership with or without preconditions. in june president trump said that he would with meet iranian president rowhani without preconditions. last week mike pompeo said the same thing. president trump tweeted over the weekend that was incorrect. a nixed message from the white house on a sensitive issue, jim and poppy. >> boris sanchez at the white house, on this story. let's go now to international correspondent nick payton walsh in teheran this morning.
the president's tweets one day seeming to threaten action, perhaps pulling back listening to the white house this morning. how's iran responding to that? are they taking the threats seriously? >> reporter: we have not had a response to the latest tweets referencing the drone and the we'll see at the end of it but this morning the foreign ministry spokesperson here said nothing trump really holds much more than 24 hours and i think that kind of embodies the confusion i think felt amongst iranians generally here. coming in 72 hours ago, the talk was john bolton is out and maybe an era of diplomacy. mike pompeo stepped into the shoes saturday morning and laid the accusations before it seemed they had evidence they were willing to share. now, the question obviously is, what is the detail that makes them so sure somehow iran is involved? iran said that they have nothing to do with this. called it baseless, irresponsible to accuse them of this and the foreign minister said that he believes it's max
decre deceit. what comes next? here we are talking about this as a sort of nebulus issue. there's an idea of retaliation and the fact that iran is accused and so we have to wait for those details and quite what might follow next here in a region of months of tension of which is a whole new chapter, jim. >> before you go, nick, no meeting planned this week between president trump and rowhani. the administration as recently as yesterday seemed open to it, the iranians saying no after multiple administration members had been willing to have a meeting with no preconditions with the iranians. where does this go? >> reporter: yeah, look. i'm kind of as lost as you are to some degree. the iranians reiterated they don't believe a meeting is is on
the agenda. they want to see sanctions lifted entirely or some degree and a softening of that perhaps but that president rowhani meets in the benefit of the iranian people but at this stage no meeting planned and i think many in iran look at the u.s. policy towards them see it digest itself, change in form overnight and come back and possibly fear the consequences as a result. >> yeah. nick paton walsh, thank you for this. it is significant. meantime, we have breaking news just developing out of farmington, maine, where a major explosion has taken place and hearing of multiple injuries. >> cnn's alexander field following the story for us. so it started with a propane smell s. that right? at a facility there. >> reporter: that was the report that came in this morning. someone in the facility, facility that provides services for people with disabilities, did defect that smell. we do know that they called officials, officials were responding at the time of this
explosion. not at all clear how many people could have been inside that building between those seeking services, staff and officials who responded or which departments they had come from but there you see it on the screen and getting the first look at the initial pictures of the devastation. at this point, the sheriff's office in franklin county is confirming multiple injures are. we don't know the extent of the injuries but really getting a look at the pictures you can see there's certainly devastation. we're following this closely throughout the morning working to bring you details as quickly as we can. >> goodness. thoughts to those that responded and the injured now and bringing you news as we have it. thank you. still to come, a company accused of pushing pills for profit at the height of the opioid crisis, well, this morning they file for bankruptcy. what is next for purdue pharma? what does this mean for all of the victims? plus, "the new york times" detailing new allegations against the supreme court justice brett kavanaugh. several candidates calling for
his impeachment and president trump coming to his defense. the governor of new york said he's taking action to curb the vaping epidemic. does it go far enough? is back . get all the shrimp you want, any way you want 'em. like new sriracha-honey shrimp, savory grilled teriyaki shrimp, classic shrimp scampi and more! red lobster's endless shrimp is $15.99. hurry in. pain happens. saturdays happen. aleve it. aleve is proven better on pain than tylenol. when pain happens, aleve it. all day strong.
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pharma maker of oxycontin is filing for bankruptcy. >> this is the next step in a plan to pay out billions of dollars in restitution over the accusations that the company fueled the opioid epidemic. i should note purdue in the settlement agreement is not admitting any culpability, any responsibility here for the crisis. jean casarez is all over the story and joins us with more. can they still sell oxycontin? >> it's a very big question because a lot of people do rely on the drug and possibly but now everything changes because now it's in bankruptcy court. a bankruptcy judge. all of this negotiation before the october national trial is not in veain because there is a plan in place before the bankruptcy judge and understanding purdue the sacklers will be responsible for $3 billion. beyond that, they'll sell purdue
pharma, 30 to 40 international companies, 90% of the revenue to go to the communities, 10% to the sacklers. they're developing a drug for the addicted to opioids. they'll take no profit from that. $4 billion. they say it's worth it. distributed throughout the country. the question as to whether to continue to sell oxycontin will be in the hands of the bankruptcy judge. the legal test is will it benefit the creditors? the answer would be, yes, because they would be getting some of the moneys from that. but there are communities in this country that believe morally based on everything that it is not right, that they should not be able to. so we don't know. as far as allocation to the communities with these moneys, that will be determined by the bankruptcy court. and another question, you talked about not having responsibility. that is so standard in all of this as jamie said last hour. it is a part of this.
>> financial pents, no responsibility. okay. new york attorney general's office found evidence of wiring of money, sackler family overseas, prior to all this. >> right. >> bankruptcy is a way to protect assets or limit liabilities. is there substance to that allegation? >> we'll see. it is $1 billion. and what the new york attorney general found was that the purdue pharma and sacklers worked with entities working with financial institutions that established a swiss bank account. now, the sacklers responded saying this was a long time ago. it was legal. it was above board. and the attorney general is trying to throw a wrench into the settlement negotiations. this was late friday. this came out. so we'll see. new york attorney general is serious about this. they' they're pursuing all avenues. >> thank you so much for the reporting. >> powerful story. >> absolutely we'll stay on the story. this morning, a new
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in the political crosshairs. a growing number of 2020 hopefuls are demanding he be impeached after a new book published laying out some new allegations of sexual misconduct against the justice. i should note cnn is not reporting the details of the new claims because we have not corroborated them independently. >> president trump is aggressively demanding the man calling the accusations lies and even suggesting the justice department should rescue kavanaugh. meanwhile, we should also note "the times" put out an editor's note saying the accuser declined to talk. joining us now to discuss is washington bureau chief for "usa today" white house reporter for "the washington post." thanks to both of you. susan, if i could begin with you, you easy for candidates to call for a judge's impeachment even though you're far from a democratic majority in the senate where it's necessary to convict and remove.
is this more about 2020 base politics than the process here? >> to be clear, the chances that justice kavanaugh's impeached, removed from the supreme court by impeachment are very, very small. the chances that this is an issue in the 2020 election i think are pretty large. underscores for these candidates the importance of the presidency in terms of shaping the supreme court. it energizes democrats, probably also republicans, though, who say that justice kavanaugh's getting a raw deal here. >> you say this is a fight that the president relishes. i think that's pretty clear from his tweet this is morning. he even goes so far to say that kavanaugh's the one being assaulted. >> that's right. we have seen the president and the entire me too moment really come to defend the men who are being accused of misconduct and say that the movement has gone too far and that actually the men are the victims and he's tried to appeal to his base, this issue both touches on the
members of the president's base agreeing with him on that and also animates the republicans who see the courts and see the supreme court as a reason to vote for president trump, a reason to vote for him even if they don't like him. the president realizes that he is able to reshape much of the judiciary, that's something that's important to conservative voters and because this issue touches on the supreme court, an issue to take to the voters and not only get support from his very strong base but also from moderate republicans and the wide swath of the republican party, the president likes the idea to talk about the supreme court, that people are talking about justice kavanaugh who he thinks got a raw deal and have been falsely accused. >> so the president saying the justice department should rescue kavanaugh. unclear what he means there. there's press department for the president pressuring the department of justice to take action against the political opponents. look at the time/warner at&t
deal or the discussion of automakers on auto emission standards. you said that it fueling concerns of the attorney general's independence from the white house. explain what that means. >> the traditional role of the justice department and the fbi not to rescue an administration's nominations. it is to investigate them. it is to vet them. to find out if there are things we don't know about them that's relevant to the senators voting on the confirmation. the idea of the president's suggestion that the justice department would rescue justice kavanaugh is one that traditionally would be seen as entirely inappropriate. and this is just the latest in a string of incidents and events and commentary that have raised questions about whether the attorney general barr as thas t to heart the role of the attorney general. we don't -- most administrations we don't look to the attorney general to be a friend to the president. we look to the attorney general
to be an independent voice that is having the interest of the country at heart when issues like this come up. >> guys, let's turn the page and talk about guns because over the weekend it was a very important phone call between nancy pelosi, chuck schumer and the president. we have no clarity on the president what he'll do and now an increasing divide among democrats on this. beto o'rourke saying we'll take away your assault weapons. chris coons said last week that's played at second amendment rallies. in perpetuity to scare republicans and then asked mayor pete did he play into the hands and he said, yes. does the division grow within
the party on this? >> the chances of a bipartisan legislation on gun control or gun safety are already very slim before the debate on thursday. they have gotten slimmer because democrats pushing a hard line saying they have to have at least universal background checks. the bill passing out of the house has to be part of the final progress, the final legislation that gets passed. president trump has not agreed to that part of the overall deal and the fact that democrats are saying that that has to be part of the final package means it's much less likely that they'll be able to come to agreement and president trump has already said and members of the white house said that congressman o'rourke's comments of taking away guns makes it harder to get a deal and wontder if there's a trojan horse in this situation. >> two different issues. right? >> very different. >> assault weapons been ban is one thing, banning future sales or a mandatory buyback of people who have them but the fact is where you have, susan, enormous
support is universal background checks. among democrats, republicans, nra members. and even republican senators who said that they can get behind it. on that issue, why won't the president get behind it? what's holding him back? he teased this before after p k parkland. pulled back. seems to be pulling back. why? >> well, i think he's pulling back because the nra which is an important supporter of his is alarmed by it. because some of the strongest core supporters don't think there's a good idea. democrats remain somewhat -- they have a shred of hope that the president comes around on this because it's possible. 9 out of 10 americans support universal background checks. how much more popular can you get than that? >> right. >> i think the president's shown in the past that while he's willing to suggest he would support something like that at the end of the day he doesn't.
mitch mcconnell made it 100% clear he is not movering ahead in the senate unless he has a guarantee from the white house that the president will stick with him on it. >> a most recent shooting showed the relevance of red flag law, someone denied previously gun permit and also universal background checks and then went through the back door. anyway, those are the facts. thanks to both of you. benjamin net nets's tenure as israel's longest serving prime minister could end or be extended tomorrow. we'll discuss next. ♪ the amount of student loan debt i have i'm embarrassed to even say i felt like i was going to spend my whole adult life
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some very sad new this is morning as we learn more about a major explosion in farmington, maine. maine's governor said one firefighter has been killed in this explosion. officials were checking out a complaint of a propane smell at a building in that town when the explosion occurred. several other people were injured. we are continuing to monitor this situation, of course, very closely. six months after going to the polls, israelis will vote again tomorrow to extend or end prime minister benjamin netanyahu's political career. by all accounts, this is a tight race between netanyahu and former military general benny gantz. both would have to make deals with smaller parties to get to the 61-seat majority in parliament. losing would end netanyahu's
reign as israel's longest serving prime minister. winning and this is important could protect him from being prosecuted on corruption charges and we have this news coming in relevant to the at least. national security council is meeting in the white house to discuss u.s. options for response to attacks in saudi arabia on oil facilities. joining me ambassador nicklas burns. good to have you on, ambassador, as always. first if we could talk about what's happening in saudi arabia. this is really a remarkable attack, brazen, involving drones. it is causing real effects in the world oil market and plausible denied culpabilities. houthis have a relationship with iran. what are the u.s. options to respond here? >> well, certainly, the trump administration has to take this very seriously. that is major event in the at least concerning saudi arabia and iran. the great sunni and the great
shia power fighting a proxy war for years. this attack brazen, very impactful. it is hard to believe i think for most of us who know something about the middle east that the houthi rubbles could have carried out such a sophisticated attack. fingers are pointing to iran. circumstantial evidence and important to understand that iran is very much capable of this type of act. however, the administration's challenge is to present public compelling evidence in public to the congress, to the american people, to our allies that it was indeed iran before i think they take any military action, can consider seriously any military action against the iranians. that's the next step for the trump administration. >> but do you believe the president has an appetite for military action? the iranians shot down a drone, the president pulled back the military action minutes before it happened. the white house is now saying saying locked and loaded is more
diplo speak. do you think the president has an appetite, focused on the affects of which economically and the 2020 election? >> i think, jim, the president was right to pull back the last time several months ago after the incident in the gulf. because he felt that there would be a considerable number of civilian casualties. i felt that was the right decision. that is more serious incident. this is the two facilities that were struck over the weekend comprise about 8 million barrels a day. this is significant implications for world energy resources, for the price of oil and very importantly for this long-term struggle between saudi arabia and iran. saudi arabia a partner of the united states. so i think the president has to consider some type of action. but the bar's going to be high here about coming up with the evidence that will convince the congress and public and allies that's what they have to do now. >> good one. there's questions ant how the administration colors intelligence to its favor, the
credibility there. talk about israel here. for folks at home watching this saying it's another israeli election but in the last week you had the israeli prime minister say he's going to annex settlements in the occupied west bank if he were to win which would, of course, not just violate international law but decades of u.s. policy here. tell us about the consequences for that region, for israel, for the two-state solution. what would that mean? >> this is going to be a transformational election. first of all, likud party and netanyahu, the prime minister, appear to be on the ropes. his main long-term 30-year ally lieberman is not on his side. running against him this time. the blue white coalition of benny gantz is strong. i would never count out netanyahu. he appears to have nine lives as prime minister. it is important for us because he is taking positions that fundamentally reverse america's
historic position in the west bank. we don't believe a settlement should be annexed. the united states until president trump did not believe that the lo land heights should be annexed. if he fulfilled the promises it will destroy any hope for a two-state solution. it will drive down further this crisis with the palestinians. and it's going to hurt american interests. >> we should note in terms of the rule of law netanyahu's effectively threatened to change the law to shield himself from investigation which just for the rule of law in that country would be remarkable. former ambassador burns, thank you very much for joining us. >> thank you. >> great point. we'll all see what happens tomorrow there and how netanyahu responds. new york could become the second state to ban flavored vaping products. but some parents are asking this morning, is the state going far enough? talking to the whistle-blower who helped take on big tobacco. remember russell crowe the
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with me now, the man who blew the whistle on big tobacco years ago, dr. jeffrey wygant, founder of smoke-free kids. everyone knows you, sir, from that great film "the insider." you were played by russell crowe and now you have used your voice and power to do so much. thank you for being here. let's begin with your reaction to governor cuomo and this move in new york. is it the right one? is it enough? >> i think it's the right one. i think it's probably not enough. these are truly dangerous products and i think we're seeing that the evidence of just vaping with nicotine, the ingredients that are used to -- also coat the lungs. and create it. so we have a dangerous product out there that needs to be off the shelves, quite frankly.
>> we had a mother and her son on on friday who have taken a lot of action on this front. her son was vaping in high school and testified before congress about juul and she e-mailed moments ago and said the potential plan doesn't include menthol e-cigarettes. kids flock to these. the governor said yesterday on cnn they're reviewing menthol and may ban that , as well. do you believe that should be banned? >> menthol is an enabling additive or flavor for it actually is an anesthetic. in its action. it numbs a lot of the respiratory tract and also makes it easier to inhale. >> okay. >> you have to understand -- go ahead. sorry. >> i was just going to say i went to the fda in 2014 to interview mitch zeller who ran then and still runs the center for tobacco products and the
whole piece that we were doing, you know, five years ago was about, like, kids getting bubble gum and gummy bear flavors and worried about it then. here's that interaction. >> there are so many flavors out there. should flavors like cotton candy, gummy bear, fruity pebbles, should those be legal? >> i won't answer the legal question. i'll give you a public health perspective. we share the concern that there are flavors out there like the one that is you mentioned that would be appealing to kids. no young person should be initiating, starting to use any nicotine containing product. >> why is there no regulation yet? the fda had this power since 2009. >> fda tried to regulate e-cigarettes as drugs and devices back to 2008. >> you were sued an it failed. >> we were sued by importers and we lost in court and the courts spoke in 2010. and said, in the absence of some
kind of treatment or therapeutic claim the only way that fda to regulate e-cigarettes under the tobacco authority. >> did the fda fail the american people? >> is that a question for me, poppy? >> it is. >> yes. i really think they have really missed the ball. they have allowed the vaping companies and in particular juul to get into the classrooms and portray the product as safe. i mean, it is far from safe. nicotine is highly addictive and what has happened before we have had the six deaths associated with vaping we have had an epidemic, a middle and high school children, becoming addicted. and the next step is actually cigarettes. and if you look at the behavior of juul and the vaping, they
follow the mantra of the tobacco industry. hook 'em young, hook 'em for life. get them addicted and they're future customers and what has happened as a result of their -- the industry's aggressive tactics and, of course, i'm going to say this, malfeasance of the fda not regulating them appropriately. >> so what do we do now? jim and i both have kids. i'm going to have that conversation. all parents should have this conversation with their kids just like saying don't smoke. are we too far into this? is this the next health crisis in this country? >> no. i think there's partly a health crisis, poppy. but i think, also, there's something that can be done until the product is reviewed by the fda. follow the action in san francisco. ban it until approved. none of these products have been approved by the fda.
and many of them claim that they're safe and for sensation. if that's true, just like the drug chantix or the nrts used either gum or patches to break the nicotine habit or addiction. so i would aggressively take it off the shelf. ban it all until they got approved. >> dr. jeffrey -- >> i don't believe it will pass approval. >> doctor, thank you for being with us and what you're doing to help kids right now. we really appreciate it. we'll talk to you soon. >> thank you, poppy. have a good day. >> okay. we'll be right back.
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well, the bahamas dodged a hit of hurricane humberto but the possibility of another one after the devastation of hurricane dorian traumatizing for residents there. >> horrible scene. the islands barely begun the recovery process. more than 1,000 people reported missing. for some survivors, even every day sounds can trigger terror. >> i don't want to hear the storm. i don't want to hear any of them. we feel like i can hear the sound. the sound when the water was coming. the beach is coming. like i hear it. like the noise it is making,
yeah. >> the official number of people dead in the bahamas still stands at 50 but with that number of missing officials say that number likely to go up as more people are identified. just a horrible situation on the ground. >> we'll promise to keep you posted on that. thank you for being with us. we'll see you back here tomorrow morning. >> at this hour with kate boudan starts right now. hello, everyone. i'm kate. thank you for joining me. the president declares to the world that the united states is locked and loaded to respond to the saudi oil field attacks but one thing that's less clear this morning is what exactly locked and loaded means in the president's tweet. let me play you the vice president's chief of staff fielding questions about just this this morning. >> locked and loaded sounds like eminent retaliation. is that what we're expecting